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Gender changers are devices that change the end of a cable into another type, allowing two cable assemblies with the same or different genders to mate.
- Male connectors are devices that contain solid pins and, optionally, latches that snap into place.
- Female connectors are devices that receive pins to form an electrical connection.
Types of Gender Changers
There are four types of gender changers: male, female, male-to-female, and female-to-male.
Male gender changers are male on both sides and used to mate two female-ended cables that could not otherwise be connected to each other.
Female gender changers are female on both sides and used to mate two male-ended cables that could not otherwise be connected to each other.
Male-to-female gender changers convert a male connector into a female connector that can be mated with another male connector.
Female-to-male changers change a female connector into a male connector that can be mated with another female connector.
Gender changers are used with many types of RF and microwave connectors, including BMA, BMMA, BNC, DVI and Type C connectors. D-subminiature connectors have a mating face shaped like the letter “D”. DIN connectors meet standards established by Deutsches Institut für Normung (DIN), a German national organization for standardization. Type F connectors have screw type coupling with a frequency range up to 1.5 GHz. Type G connectors feature a snap-on coupling a 75 ohm impedance . Box header and pin header connectors are commonly available. Gender changers are often used with MCX, MHV, MMCX, QMA, RCA, and SC connectors. Other connector types include SMA, SMB, SMC, SSMA, SSSMB, SMP, TNC, USB, XLR, and ZMA connectors. Triax connectors are used with triaxial cables where maximum RF shielding and minimum noise radiation is required. Twinax connectors are used with twinaxial cables for balanced low level and high sensitivity circuits. Strip connectors have many contacts. IEEE 1394 connectors can have either four or six contacts.
Gender changers for metric connectors are available in several sizes. These connectors derive their names from the length of the inside diameter of their outer conductors and support specific frequency ranges. For example, 1.85 mm connectors are used for frequencies from DC to 65 GHz. By contrast, 2.4 mm connectors are used for frequencies from DC to 65 GHz. Originally developed by Hewlett Packard, 2.92 mm connectors mate with both SMA and 3.5 mm connectors. These devices offer mode-free performance to 40 GHz. 7 mm connectors offer the lowest reflection coefficient and most repeatable measurement of all 18 GHz connectors.
Standards and specifications for gender changers can be found at the IHS Standard Store.
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